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Which magnesium supplement is right for you?

Magnesium deficiency affects 10-20% of the entire global population!1https://www.cerascreen.co.uk/blogs/health-portal/magnesium-deficiency-symptoms With modern stress levels often depleting magnesium stores, many people are left with insufficient levels. Magnesium deficiency has been linked to inflammation, hypertension, heart disease, type 2 diabetes, Alzheimer’s disease, certain cancers, periodontal disease, depression, psychosis, and other serious conditions.2https://www.health.harvard.edu/staying-healthy/what-you-should-know-about-magnesium23https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/magnesium-supplements4https://www.webmd.com/diet/supplement-guide-magnesium5https://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/nutrition-and-healthy-eating/expert-answers/magnesium-supplements/faq-204662706https://www.metabolics.com/blog/the-definitive-guide-to-magnesium-and-magnesium-supplements So, it may be time you start supplementing!

Are you magnesium deficient?

Experiencing any of the following symptoms may be suggestive of a magnesium deficiency7https://www.metabolics.com/blog/the-definitive-guide-to-magnesium-and-magnesium-supplements

  • fatigue
  • muscle weakness
  • vomiting
  • decreased appetite
  • nausea
  • difficulty thinking clearly
  • muscle cramps or twitches
  • mental disorders
  • migraines
  • fibromyalgia
  • abnormal heart rhythms

If you are concerned about low magnesium levels, you can get a blood test done with your doctor.

Supplementing with magnesium has amazing benefits and can be taken safely every day. Choosing a good quality supplement will ensure your body is effectively absorbing the magnesium and protect you from uncomfortable side effects.

Choosing a Magnesium Supplement

When it comes to choosing a magnesium supplement there are many options available. You may see different forms including magnesium glycinate, citrate, and oxide. Cheaper forms of magnesium take up less room in a tablet, so you’ll often find the better-quality supplements are larger. You can usually cut or crush these tablets if you struggle to swallow them whole. You can also opt for a powdered version.

We recommend opting for magnesium glycinate when choosing a magnesium supplement. Here’s why…

Magnesium oxide

Magnesium oxide is often found in cheaper supplements and can cause loose stools, have a laxative effect and does not build up magnesium stores in the tissue. It has poor bioavailability with gut absorption believed to be as low as 4%.8https://www.metabolics.com/blog/the-definitive-guide-to-magnesium-and-magnesium-supplements So unfortunately, only ~4% of the elemental magnesium contained in these supplements is actually absorbed.9https://www.metabolics.com/blog/the-definitive-guide-to-magnesium-and-magnesium-supplements As it’s cheaper, it’s the most common form of magnesium on the shelves.

Magnesium citrate

Magnesium citrate is certainly better than oxide forms but is not considered the best choice. It is a more bioavailable form of magnesium but may have a mild laxative effect.10https://www.metabolics.com/blog/the-definitive-guide-to-magnesium-and-magnesium-supplements Magnesium citrate can also cause cramping and loose stools in those with poor gut health.

Magnesium glycinate

Magnesium taurate, glycinate, and malate are known to be the superior forms of magnesium. Magnesium glycinate (also known as magnesium diglycinate or magnesium bisglycinate) is a chelated form of magnesium and the amino acid glycine. The presence of glycine improves the bioavailability of the supplement.11https://www.metabolics.com/blog/the-definitive-guide-to-magnesium-and-magnesium-supplements

Magnesium glycinate is gentle on the gut, has no laxative effect, builds up magnesium stores in the body, and provides superior absorption. It’s absorbed via amino acid pathways and does not disassociate in your gut. As the glycinate form of magnesium is gentle, it doesn’t need to be taken with food.

Magnesium glycinate offers many benefits – it activates the neurotransmitter GABA and has a calming effect, heals the stomach lining, helps conjugate bile acids, and is specific for sleep. As it’s known to cause a calming effect on the brain, it can be taken before bed to aid with sleep.12https://www.nutriadvanced.ie/news/3-reasons-why-magnesium-helps-you-sleep/ If you have issues sleeping, take magnesium 10-15 minutes before bed. You could also have some ready at your bedside if you are prone to waking up regularly and struggle to stay asleep.

The NHS recommends the following magnesium requirements:

  • 270mg per day for women (aged 19-64 years)
  • 300mg per day for men (aged 19-64 years)

Recent evidence also supports the benefits of supplementing with higher amounts of magnesium, such as preventing migraines13https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/magnesium-benefits and reducing high blood pressure.14https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/magnesium-benefits15https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/supplements-lower-blood-pressure

You can read more about magnesium here.

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